Though I’d heard of them
I swear I’d never once even seen them

But the first time I stumbled across them
Recognized them for exactly what they were

Their little faces sweet and red
With embarrassment, shame and pride

And when I exclaimed over them, the boy I was with
Picked one and placed it behind my ear

Saying they would always
Remind him of me;

So of course I fell instantly in love
But then he disappeared to a girl back home

And though once several years later
He sent me an unexpected bouquet,

I never heard from him after that.

Dicentra spectabilis got its name for its pillow-like, heart-shaped flower that dangles like a single pendulous drop. Bleeding hearts are shade-loving woodland plants that bloom in the cool of spring. Although they stay in bloom for several weeks, the plants often become ephemeral, disappearing for the rest of the summer if exposed to too much sun or heat. The roots stay alive and the plant will regrow in fall or the following spring